If you’re a person of a certain generation, you may have grown up with one of these things (hint: it’s a telephone) mounted to the kitchen wall of your family home. Ah, the days of no privacy on the absolutely un-mobile phone (on which conversations could eventually be rendered somewhat more private with the addition of the very long handset extension chord)! If you enjoy art and nostalgia, I recommend the exhibit, New York 1962 – 1964 on now at the Jewish Museum. This very fun exhibit uses the museum’s influential role in the early 1960s New York art scene as a jumping-off point to examine how artists living and working in New York City responded to the events that marked this moment in time. The exhibit features two floors of fantastic art, design, and pop culture and runs through January 8th, 2023.
Isn’t it charming that certain toy manufacturers would design a Pink Toy Telephone that’s so retro, there’s 100% certainty that no child using this toy has ever actually seen (let alone used) a phone that looks like this. What a way to teach the history of telephone communications!
German painter Otto Dix portrayed his subjects with a hard-edged, detached realism, accentuating unattractive features and signs of age. Since this portarit, The Businessman Max Roesberg, Dresden (1922) was a commission, his treatment of his subject was rather kind. Dix highlights Roesberg’s business prowess — which was short-lived — in several ways. The room is cluttered with materials central to a productive professional practice, such as a telephone, calendar, and tools for correspondence,while the palette of greens and blues alludes to rh coorof money. Moreover, Roesberg’s body is almost completely obscured by his business suit — a mark of his professional identity.
Photographed in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC.
Do you recognize this object? Do you know how works? How old are you? Don’t answer that. It’s hard to believe that this totally rad Pink Rotary Dial Desk Telephone was once the height of cool and contemporary consumer design. Now, it’s just a sculpture, or a piece pop culture ephemera.
Maybe you’ve seen one used as a prop in an old movie you enjoy for its nostalgic pull.
It is beautiful though, ins’t it? Sure it is.
Photographed at ICFF at Javits Center, NYC, in May of 2018